On March 9, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Board announced its selection of 64 priority projects in metropolitan Chicago that will receive local technical assistance. Thanks to a $4.25 million grant from the federal Sustainable Communities Initiative, the success of these projects will be integral to implementing the region’s first-ever comprehensive plan, GO TO 2040.
Where We Stand
This is a huge moment for CMAP and the region, and all of us at MPC extend a hearty “Congratulations!” to CMAP and its staff for moving this important initiative forward.
MPC is committed to doing everything we can to ensure the success of CMAP’s GO TO 2040 plan. In our 2011 Plan for Prosperity, we outlined where MPC and CMAP priorities overlap and how MPC’s activities this year are designed to help achieve GO TO 2040’s goals for Livable Communities, Regional Mobility, and Efficient Governance.
It is particularly thrilling that a number of interjurisdictional efforts successfully pursued CMAP technical assistance – a strong indicator that these collaborations are models for others. Indeed, these proposals had stiff competition: CMAP received more than 130 applications from around the region with 220 distinct project requests, ranging from comprehensive plans, zoning ordinances, corridor plans, and housing analyses.
Clearly, CMAP is tapping into an unmet need to assist local communities in becoming more sustainable, equitable, and economically competitive. We look forward to working with CMAP to advance projects that warrant additional support.
Project Progress Report: Public-Private Partnerships
MPC is supporting the Public-Private Partnerships for Transportation Act (HB1091/SB146), which would allow Illinois to tap Public-Private Partnerships as a strategy for investing in the new transportation assets this region needs, such as freight rail modernization, express trains to the airports, bus rapid transit, high-speed rail, and other transit and road enhancements.
The City of Chicago’s lease of its parking meters angered the public because the process lacked transparency, funds were used to plug budget holes instead of investing in transportation projects, and hourly rates jumped. But PPPs have been used all around the country and world to generate considerable new investment in transportation infrastructure and save taxpayers money. At least 23 states, including Indiana, have passed legislation enabling PPPs for designated projects – but not Illinois.
What’s more, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning’s GO TO 2040 plan endorses the thoughtful use of PPPs, stating “the focus of PPPs should be on funding transportation system improvements, not on generating revenue for non-transportation purposes by leasing or privatizing transportation assets.” By advocating for PPPs, particularly for new public assets such as enhanced transit, MPC is working to keep Illinois competitive: PPPs can offer considerable cost savings and shortened delivery time, while effectively allocating risk to the private sector.
Read MPC’s web site for updates on the PPP bill and other legislation we are advancing this session. The site also is featuring the ongoing series “PPP Profiles,” case studies on national and international public-private-partnerships. To share ideas for future profiles, please contact Chrissy Nichols, MPC Project Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MPC Roundtable Sponsorships
Public roundtables are an important and effective way MPC directly engages a wide range of key audiences in advancing positive policy change in our region, and introducing individuals, organizations and companies to our work and each other. In 2010, eight MPC roundtables hosted 645 attendees and 33 expert panelists.
Sponsors are key to this success, providing valuable resources that enable MPC to convene people for these important discussions. Roundtable sponsors have the opportunity to play a role in the roundtable program, and they receive significant visibility before and after each event, including through WBEZ 91.5's Chicago Amplified program.
MPC has a number of 2011 roundtable sponsorships available. Upcoming events will highlight:
Contact Terri Scales, MPC Assistant Development Director, at (312) 863-6013 or email@example.com ?for more information.
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